Ye Olde Curiosity Shop, Seattle

I can’t think of a better way of spending our last day in Seattle than spending it sifting through the oddities that can be found in the Ye Olde Curiosity Shop. The Curiosity Shop was originally founded by Joe Standley (a popular Seattle personality) in 1899. Standley ran the business until 1940 when he passed away and passed it along to his family (who still run the shop).

Here there are collections of lots of oddities including: a stuffed two headed cow, a merman and its baby, tons of shrunken head trophies, American Indian artefacts like baskets and totems, a pig in a jar, and two mummies: one female “Gloria” and the infamous “Sylvester” who is pictured above.

Sylvester’s story is an interesting one. In around 1895, two cowboys riding through the Gila Bend Desert in central Arizona came upon the nude body of a man half-buried in the sands. They removed the body and carried it to a nearby town for possible identification but were unable to do so. The body still remains unidentified. He died from a single gunshot wound to the stomach, which can be seen quite clearly through his glass case.

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